Priest pilgrim with his donkey

With a hat tip to “Bruvver Eccles” (see his comment on the previous blog post) I reprint this lovely photo and article translated from “Le Parisien” (27 August 2012).

With his Roman collar, his beret and his donkey, Dom Antoine Drouineau, 34, has not gone unnoticed in recent days on the roads of Loir-et-Cher, Loiret, in the Essonne and Seine-et-Marne. Chaplain in a school in Loir-et-Cher, this member of the community of Saint-Martin has been appointed priest referent in Moissy-Cramayel Lieusaint and Réau, and decided to turn his transfer into a pilgrimage.

The young man left on August 21. “I wanted to make a little pilgrimage to arrive on my new ministry and have time to pray, he says. Walking with the donkey was conducive to meditation because it walks slowly.”

The journey of the young priest ran smoothly: “I put up the tent every night. People greeted me and offered me a shower or food. I went through the magnificent scenery of the Sologne, the Chambord forest, where we saw game, the Loire … “But a priest and his donkey on the roads has not failed to attract the curiosity of passers by: “When they saw that I was a priest with my Roman collar, they were even more intrigued by my approach. Some have asked me to pray for them. ‘

Dom Antoine – the name Dom has Italian origins of the community of Saint-Martin – Sénart will be officially installed in the parish this Sunday, Sept. 2 during Masses and Lieusaint Moissy-Cramayel. Being near to Paris will allow him to begin his doctorate in philosophy.


About Gareth Thomas

After a mixed career as an aircraft technician, London fringe theatre playwright, Franciscan friar, and secondary school teacher, I find myself dividing my time mostly between looking after the needs of four donkeys in a remote location in the mountains in the Costa Blanca and preparing a legal case against the corrupt management of my monstrous last employer - the Elians group - for unfair dismissal. I like to hear the wind in the pine trees. I do not like struggling to get a duvet into a duvet cover. My musical tastes are extinct and I have mostly given up cycle racing.
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4 Responses to Priest pilgrim with his donkey

  1. Given that some French priests don’t even wear a dog-collar when they go about their business, it’s good to see someone who is actually an advertisement for the Catholic faith.

  2. Frere Rabit says:

    It´s quite difficult wearing clerical dress in some parts of France. I was walking around Carcassone one morning, years ago while hitch-hiking frtom Dieppe to Perpignan in Franciscan habit and taking a short break from the motorway to see the walled city. Somebody simply spouted a torrent of bad language at me and openly spat at me in the street! The memory of the Albigensian crusade, I suppose.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Mon cher frere lapin, un grand merci pour les nouvelles de Dom Antoine et son ane!
    Je lui garde en priere, – j’espere qu’il arrivera sain et sauve a son destination, ayant eu un pelerinage qui lui prepara pour Moissy-Cremayel. …And let him know if he needs to visit Canterbury – he will find a welcome!
    Sorry for silence my end – been involved volunteering with the Olympics – and Paralymipcs start tomorrow – a busy summer season this year! Bisous – Cerise!

  4. Frere Rabit says:

    Hello Cherry, and thank you for your comment! Sounds like you are very busy! I´m starting in my new school next week: a big jump up to something much better – and rather exciting. All upper school exam classes and no more Key Stage 3. Free school lunches, and a school day one hour shorter than before. Not teaching English either, but a variety of subjects geared to my other strengths. This will be harder work, but a chance to consolidate here. Pace e bene!

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